tagNovels and NovellasWinter Fires Ch. 05

Winter Fires Ch. 05


"The Floyd are going to be at Knebworth!" Simon told Marianne a few days later.

It was an early evening after Simon had worked a long shift, and he was unwinding. They were in the 'Cross Keys', at one of the tables. Simon had a beer, Marianne was drinking her customary white wine. He was holding a copy of New Musical Express, the legendary newspaper of the rock scene, pointing to an advert showing that Pink Floyd would be headlining the next festival at Knebworth.

"Great!" Marianne responded, "do you think we'll be able to get tickets?"

"Can but try, I guess!" Simon told her. "It says here 'Tickets available by post', and that they're £2.75 each in advance or £3.50 on the day – but we won't wait, this'll sell out in no time."

Marianne took a sip of her wine before saying, "Right. How old's that NME?"

Simon checked the date at the top of the page.

"Day before yesterday's. Not too bad I guess…"

Marianne considered for a moment, then said, decisively, "Okay. Finish your drink and we'll go and get a letter and cheque in the post tonight. I agree with you, I think they'll sell out in no time and I'm not going to miss out on the chance if I can help it!"

She stood, drank her wine in two long gulps and gestured to Simon to finish his. His pint disappeared quickly as well. He took her offered glass, put it back on the bar and said "Good night!" to Betty, the barmaid, before opening the door to allow Marianne to precede him out into the open air.

He said nothing about one band he'd seen on the list for the festival: Rocksette would be playing there.

- - - - - - - - - -

On the way to Simon's house he had a brainwave and used a phone box to call his mother. Marianne, in turn, phoned hers, and also spoke to her sister. After, they stopped off at the chippie and got cod and chips for four to bring back.

Simon and Marianne were laughing together as they walked in through his parents' front door. His mother greeted them, "I like to hear that sound. I wish I could hear it more often." She took the fish 'n' chips in the paper bags from them and hurried into the kitchen. "I'll be right out," she called over her shoulder, "Your Dad's in there, just setting the table."

Simon led Marianne into the dining room, where indeed he found his father.

"Hi, Dad. This is Marianne. Marianne, this is my father, William, but he prefers Bill."

"Pleased to meet you, sir," Marianne told Simon's father with one of her brilliant smiles.

"Very pleased to meet you, too, Marianne!" Simon's father gave her an appreciative look over, then gave his son a sly wink. Before he could say anything, Simon hastily intervened.

"Night off, Dad?" he asked.

William Cook was an older version of his son, but taller. Just over six feet tall, he was a wiry blonde, now with some lighter silvery strands in his still-thick hair.

"Likely to be a few more nights off, I reckon," his father answered Simon, pessimistically. "The factory's slowing right down. There's talk of redundancies."

Simon was now worried. His parents had some savings, yes, he knew that – but that wouldn't last long if his father lost his job.

"Oh, don't worry son. I'm fairly safe, I've got several years in – it'll be last in, first out. And the union'll help, too." He reached forward and tousled his son's hair, causing Simon to grimace and twist away. "Just 'elp me lay the table, else the fish'll be cold."

No more was said on the subject, and he and Marianne helped his father. In a trice all was ready, just as Janet came in with the first two plates. "Sit yourselves down, now," she said, putting a big plate of the fried, battered cod with the beautiful golden fried chipped potatoes in front of her husband. "Marianne, you too. You'll be needing your strength to keep up with this one," she told her guest with a wink.

"MUM!" Simon cried, while Marianne hid a broad smile behind her hand. Grinning, his mother left and returned to the kitchen, emerging a moment later with plates for her son and herself.

All four restricted themselves to small talk over their meal. Once they'd finished, Simon made them all a cup of tea, before he and Marianne made their excuses and left to go up to his room.

"Caroline said she'd love to go, too. So you'll be going with beautiful twin sisters, and if that doesn't turn you on then my name's Mary Whitehouse!"

"Two of you? I don't think I'll survive!" he despaired, putting the back of his hand to his forehead.

Marianne smacked his backside, saying "Go on with you – you love the idea! Just don't think you're getting the both of us in bed, Simon – that's not on the menu!"

Simon quickly wrote out the cheque while Marianne penned the letter, asking for three tickets. She enclosed a stamped addressed envelope, giving Simon's address, took the cheque from him and sealed the envelope. Finally she licked another stamp very suggestively and stuck it on the main envelope, addressed it, and put it on Simon's bedside table.

"Now that we've got that done, what shall we do next?" she asked him, and grinned at his answer of "Well, I do have an idea… if I can't have both twins, I'll happily make do with this one!"

Simon trailed a fingertip up from the valley between her breasts towards her chin. Marianne suddenly ducked down and lunged for it with her teeth, causing Simon to hastily withdraw it, leaving both of them grinning.

"Is the door shut?" she asked him.

"Yes," he answered, leaning forward to kiss the top slope of a breast.

"Good!" Marianne pulled away, leaving Simon momentarily, grasped the bottom of her T-shirt and lifted it off in one smooth movement. She grinned ferally at Simon who smiled back and began removing his own clothes.

Marianne had tried to remove her jeans while still wearing her trainers, so she was the last to remove her underwear. She smiled seductively at Simon and then fell against him, kissing him with lips full of passion and fire. Simon returned in kind, his hands roaming over her back and the taut roundness of her buttocks as they kissed, tongues meeting and twisting past each other like snakes.

Simon felt one hand sneak between their bodies to fasten on his dick. It was already hard, urgent. Marianne stroked it a couple of times and then, slightly out of breath, pulled away from his lips.

"I've not done this with you, yet. I'll bet you'll enjoy it, though." She trailed small kisses down the fine hair on his chest and across his belly before putting a tiny kiss on the tip of his cock. She looked up to see Simon's face. He smiled a little nervously down at her, not quite daring to believe what she was about to do.

But Marianne rained kisses along the underside of his penis, then licked it from the base up to the tip, flicking her tongue against the sensitive part just under the bulbous end. Simon's dick was now drooling with pre-cum, and he watched amazed as Marianne licked it off, smacking her lips. "I love the taste of you, Simon," she told him.

She encircled the base of his cock with finger and thumb before sloppily drooling over it, spreading the slick wetness over him before slowly, oh so slowly working him with her hand. She gripped him tightly, almost too tightly, but the lubrication was enough.

Simon let out a shuddering breath that he didn't realise he'd been holding, then drew another one when Marianne began suckling on the end of his rod. The sensation was superb, and when she pushed the tip of her tongue into the tiny slit at the tip he couldn't contain the moan that escaped from his lips.

Just when he thought she was never going to do it, Marianne opened her lips and pushed her head down onto his cock. Simon couldn't believe how good her mouth felt as she engulfed him. She massaged the underside of his cock with her tongue once she'd taken him a little more than halfway, then sucked as she pulled up, twisting her agile tongue around on the way.

Marianne repeated this a few times, but she hadn't been going long before Simon felt himself approaching his climax.

"Uh – uh, Marianne, I'm going to, uh, come…"

Marianne pulled away from his cock and gripped him at the base, waiting for him to ebb a little before continuing. "Not yet, Simon, not yet. I'm enjoying this, and besides, there's something I've always wanted to try, and your cock is so nice and… well. Here goes!" She flashed him a saucy smile, drooled more spit over him and wiped it all over again, then once more took his extra-hard penis into her mouth and pushed down.

And down, and further down. She stopped about a couple of inches from the base and looked up at him. Simon saw her take a breath through her nostrils and push herself further down. He felt the tip of his dick touching the back of her throat, and saw her fighting the gag reflex that he was sure would have her stop. He couldn't resist placing one hand on the back of her head, but Marianne shook herself a little, warning him with her eyes, so he desisted.

Once more, he saw her take a deep breath, felt her relax and push herself down once more. He saw tears beginning to form in her eyes, and Marianne lifted one arm in the air for a moment. She looked as if she'd use it to push him away and herself backwards, but then she formed a fist and punched the air.

For the first time he felt the indescribable sensation of having his curly pubic hair in contact with her lips while his dick was firmly seated in his girlfriend's throat. Marianne stayed there for a moment before pulling back slightly, and he felt her throat working. She drooled from the corner of her mouth and he felt her breathing once more, then again she took a breath and pushed herself down.

It was all too much for Simon. "Mari – I'm going to come…"

Marianne began to draw back but was too late, Simon was already spurting uncontrollably. She jerked herself off of his penis, coughing and spluttering. Simon quickly asked, "Are you all right, Marianne?" but it was a few moments before she could answer Simon's desperate entreaties.

"Yes, I'm all right. But next time – if there is a next time – give me more warning! I just got a lungful of sperm, you fucking idiot!"

"I'm sorry, darlin'. But you were incredible, and I just couldn't stand it. I'm really very, very sorry – "

"Yeah, well we'll have to work on your control. I'm not doing that again until you can hold onto yourself, or at least give me a moment or two of warning."

"Marianne, I said I'm sorry!" Simon retorted. He felt guilty, and that guilt was threatening to translate into anger.

Things were tense between them for a minute. Marianne sat on the edge of the bed, still naked, still short of breath from the experience. Simon lay back staring at the ceiling, guilt festering in him. Finally however Marianne let him off the hook.

She turned around, face open and eyes full of concern for him.

"Oh, it's all right, Simon. I shouldn't have shouted, it was as much my fault as yours – I had you on the edge of coming early. You surprised me, that's all, and choking isn't anyone's favourite thing. We'll say no more about it, we'll just work at giving you a bit more control – and I swear I won't drive you to the edge and complain if you go over again. How's that?"

Simon could not remain upset with Marianne. He picked himself up to sit next to his girlfriend and kissed her, pulling away briefly to say, "That sounds lovely to me, Mari. Now, kiss me?"

- - - - - - - - - -

The next day, Simon duly posted off the order for three tickets, with a cheque and a stamped, addressed envelope enclosed. He'd know whether he'd been successful sometime, he grumbled to himself – but in the meantime he'd be on tenterhooks, not knowing.

A few evenings later he and Marianne went out on another short date – Simon's duty once more getting in the way of a later one. But he enjoyed it, and he thought Marianne had as well. They'd gone for a walk along the sea-front, eaten fish 'n' chips out of the paper on the way and finished up with kisses that promised each other everything. Finally, however, he'd walked her to her door. He said goodnight, with a final, fairly chaste, kiss before turning and walking away, whistling.

- - - - - - - - - -

Marianne was unsurprised to find Caroline waiting for her. Every time she came home her sister would be there, waiting to ask about how the date went, how he was.

Finally, Marianne snapped: "Cari! He's my boyfriend!" Seeing the hurt on her sister's face, she continued more calmly, "We spoke about this before, remember? Please, Cari, let's not hurt each other over this?"

Caroline, with tears threatening to spill, shook her head, but asked her sister, "Are you two serious?"

That set Marianne back on her heels. 'Are we? Am I?' she thought.

"I don't know, Cari," she told her sister, quietly. She stood up, leaving her sister on the sofa next to where she'd been sitting. "I honestly don't know, right now," she went on, softly. "I think we could be. How do I know? How does anyone know?"

"Ask Mum?" Caroline suggested, equally quietly, calm now.

"I s'pose…" her sister murmured. "I just know that I've never really felt like this. Simon and I feel attached to one another. But… I dunno. Is he the one?"

"Sleep on it, or ask Mum," Caroline suggested again.

Marianne bent to kiss her sister on the forehead. "Thanks, sis. I love you!"

"You too, Mari. If he is the one, I promise I'll leave you two alone, okay?"

"Okay, Cari. G'night."


Marianne left her sister in the living room and ascended the stairs, but she didn't go straight to bed. Instead she knocked on her mother's door, gently. "Mum?"

"Come in," she heard through the door. Marianne opened and slipped inside her mother's room.

Tina turned her bedside light on, and Marianne came and sat on the edge of her bed. She found that she didn't quite know how to ask what she wanted to ask, so she temporised.

"Sorry to wake you, Mum."

"That's all right, Marianne." Even when roused from near-sleep, Marianne knew that her mother always knew which of her daughters was which.

She sat there, perched on the edge of her mother's bed, for another minute. Finally her mother gently nudged her.


"Oh! Sorry, Mum. Ummm… can I ask you something?"

"Of course you can, love. What is it?" Then, with a small hint of dark suspicion her mother continued, "There's nothing wrong, is there?"

Marianne couldn't help the guilty grin that stole onto her face. "No, I'm not pregnant, mother!" she answered, and touched her mother's arm. "It's nothing like that. It's just… how do I know if Simon's The One?"

"Oh, sweetheart. You either know it, or he probably isn't."

"How long did it take for you to know that Dad was The One for you?"

"Not long. Oh, in the films they say, 'It was love at first sight!' and I know it can happen like that, though it didn't for me. But we hadn't been courting for more than a few weeks before I knew. I just knew…"

Her mother's voice trailed off and Marianne knew she was lost in memory.

Tina slowly shook her head, smiling to herself. "He was wonderful, your father. He'd pick me up on his motorbike, take me to the dance, or to the picture-palace, and we'd spend the evening in each other's company. I thought he was so handsome. Then he'd take me home, and spend most of the next week taking that damn bike apart and putting it back together…"

Tina sat back in the bed, silent for a while. Finally, Marianne leant forward, kissed her mother and left.

- - - - - - - - - -

By the next morning Marianne had more-or-less convinced herself that she'd been just tired, that her fears and insecurities about her relationship with Simon were groundless.

They didn't see each other for the next couple of days, but soon Simon called around to the Simmons' house again.

When the door was opened, Simon said "Oh, hi, Caroline. Is Marianne in?" He was too preoccupied to notice the expression on Caroline's face as she let him in.

"Hi, Simon! Wait here, I'll go fetch her," she told him, and climbed the stairs swiftly to see her sister.

Marianne was ready, but wanted to keep him waiting – she didn't want to appear too eager. Caroline was bursting with something, she could see, so she sat her sister down on the bed beside her.

"Okay, what's up?" she asked.

"Oh, it's nothing. Just that Simon was there when I opened the door and just said "Hi, Caroline," she told Marianne with a big smile.

"You mean he can tell which of us is which?" Marianne asked. "Wow – he's been paying more attention than I thought."


"You're sure it wasn't just a lucky guess?"

"No, he just glanced at me and used my name. He's the first one, Marianne!"

"Yes, the first to be able to tell us apart. Well, well, well."

They sat in silence for a minute or two, until Caroline gently reminded her sister, "He's downstairs –"

"Waiting for me."


"Okay. Let's test this. We'll go down together, but first…"

- - - - - - - - - -

The twins came down the stairs together. When they reached the bottom they looked at each other and then turned to face Simon, side-by side.

Simon looked at them both, puzzled. "Why's Marianne wearing your top, Caroline?" he asked.

Suddenly he found himself holding onto a wriggling teenaged girl who was hugging him tightly, raining kisses down onto his face. As quickly as the attack began it ended, as Marianne dropped her feet to the floor and stood up. She looked back at her sister.

"Proof positive!" she crowed.

"Yes!" said her equally excited sister.

"What…?" asked Simon.

"You can tell us apart!" Caroline told him.

"Well, yeah…"

"You realise that you're the first of our boyfriends who could do that? Reliably I mean, no guessing?" Marianne asked him.

"How'd you do it?" Caroline asked.

Simon paused. "I don't know," he told her, eventually, "I just can."

- - - - - - - - - -

Once they left her house, however, and were waiting for the bus, Marianne grew quiet.

Later in 'Sundowners', after they'd had a couple of drinks each, Marianne was dancing with Simon. She'd brightened up a lot since they'd arrived there, but now she had a serious expression on her face as she slowly swayed with him.

"What's on your mind then, Marianne?" Simon finally asked.

"Oh, nothing…"

Simon waited, still dancing with her. He pulled her in closer still, and she sighed, resting her cheek against his.

"This is so nice, Simon," she told him.

Afterwards, Marianne asked if they could leave. Simon was a bit surprised, as normally he had to prise her away from the club with a crowbar. They walked off towards the taxi-rank, hand in hand, but Marianne was once more very quiet.

Simon stopped. "Okay, Marianne. There's something wrong. Have I done something, said something?"

His girlfriend hugged him tightly, kissing him affectionately. "No, no, nothing you've said or done, Simon. It's just…" she looked around, saw a low wall next to the pavement they were walking along and sat on it, patting the space next to it.

"Look, I want to go and get some photographs taken by that photographer we met the other week, in the restaurant. I didn't know how you'd feel about it."

"Is that all?" he asked in turn, but then his face went blank as he considered what she'd said.

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